Job satisfaction remains a major challenge for the teaching profession. According to recent research by the National Center for Education Statistics, 8 percent of public school teachersand fully 20 percent of those with no prior full-time teaching experienceleft the classroom in the 2004-05 school year. The NCES's study suggests that lack of professional autonomy may be partly to blame. Others point, relatedly, to growing pressures on teachers as a result of standards-and-accountability initiatives, and a feeling that the profession is not personally rewarding.
What's your view? Why do so many teachers choose to leave the profession? What changes could schools make to improve teachers' job satisfaction? What do you like and dislike about your teaching career?